COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech soccer team will begin its hunt for an Ohio Valley Conference championship on Sunday when it hosts Jacksonville State in its OVC opener. The match is set to begin at 1 p.m. CT on the Tech soccer field.
The Golden Eagles are coming off an extended period of rest, not having seen action since September 9. Tech dropped a 1-0 decision against Western Carolina in its last contest, despite holding the Catamounts scoreless for 77 minutes. Tech's next match against Lipscomb was cancelled due to inclement weather.
"We are looking to try and take this second half of our season and keep it rolling going into conference," said head coach Daniel Brizard. "It's going to have been 14 days since we played our last competive match so we've been trying to amp up practice a bit."
The match, which will mark the first of a three-game home stand, will also be Tech's annual Think Pink match in support of breast cancer awareness. The players will toss out t-shirts before the game to the fans.
The Golden Eagles will look to Ellie Iaciofano, a junior forward for Tech, to continue her hot play. She has scored four goals in her last four contests and leads the Golden Eagles with five goals and 11 points.
Tech will also rely on the grit and determination that freshman goalkeeper Jordan Brown has provided so far through the season. Brown, who has racked up 49 saves so far this season, ranks second in the OVC in stops and will look to continue her development heading into the OVC schedule.
Scouting Jacksonville State
- JSU has been off to a hot start, owning a 7-2-1 non-conference record heading into OVC play.
- The Golden Eagles are 3-4-3 all-time against the Gamecocks, winning the last match-up 2-1 at Jacksonville, Ala. in double-overtime.
- Courtney Hurt leads JSU with five goals on the season, good for a tie with Tech's Iaciofano for first in the OVC.
- Goalkeeper Katelyn Geddings ranks third in the OVC with 45 saves, four behind the Golden Eagles' Brown.
Daniel Brizard on the Gamecocks
"We expect no different from JSU than what we've faced all year. They have some confidence with some wins coming into this match. We expect nothing but a hard fought conference match from them. We can't control what they do. We can only control what our players do and how we approach the game. If we do the things we are capable of doing, it will be a quality match."